In May 2022, the European Commission proposed an EU Solar Skills Partnership, as part of REPowerEU plans to disentangle the continent from fossil gas dependency. The new EU Solar Skills Partnership develops a clear understanding of the concrete upskilling and reskilling measures needed, and fosters cooperation between industry, social partners, training providers and regional authorities in unlocking EU funding.
Pact for Skills
Alongside this, the European Commission launched its Pact for Skills in 2020, a shared engagement model for skills development in Europe. Companies, workers, national, regional and local authorities, social partners, cross-industry and sectoral organisations, education and training providers, chambers of commerce and employment services all have a key role to play.
SolarPower Europe is preparing to create an Onshore Renewable Energy Large-Scale Partnership with other stakeholders under the Commission’s Pact for Skills. By joining this pact, SolarPower Europe will commit to:
- Develop a mentoring programme via its online #SolarWorks solar jobs platform where it will match job seekers with job openings in the sector based on their skills.
- Connect job seekers and students to job opportunities and training, based on job seekers’ missing skills. The job platform proposes relevant trainings so that they can upgrade their existing skillset.
- Build strong relations with educational institutions and gain insights on skills gap and necessary upskilling measures
During DG EMPL’s event, Walburga Hemetsberger, CEO at SolarPower Europe commented;
“Europe must be united in tackling the energy and climate crises of our time. The best way to solve problems is with teamwork, by working together we will deliver the best solutions....The solar sector is ready to do our part in delivering a carbon neutral and energy secure Europe. To get there we need to work together and ensure we have the skilled workforce to get the job done across Europe. This is where European teamwork comes in.”
SolarPower Europe CEO further highlighted the importance of building European awareness and excitement about the massive amount of solar job opportunities that are on offer; as well as empowering Europeans with the right skills to access solar job opportunities. To reach the European Commission’s REPowerEU energy security goals by 2030, over 1 million solar workers will be needed, largely in the installation segment.
The EU Pact for Skills and the Onshore Renewable Energy Large-Scale Partnership are key tools to leverage the required workforce. Working together with other partners, SolarPower Europe wants to share best practice, ensure available funding gets to the right training programmes and awareness campaigns – and make sure Europe knows that the energy transition is for everyone.
#SolarWorks Platform & Fair
To address the solar skills challenge, SolarPower Europe has developed the #SolarWorks Platform, the first online recruitment tool dedicated to solar, the #SolarWorks Platform is a one-stop-shop for future solar workers and recruiters, matching applicants to relevant roles or training programmes.
The #SolarWorks Platform will launch officially on 1 December, during the first annual #SolarWorksFair. This virtual event will allow job seekers and companies to instantly connect.
It is an opportunity for companies from the entire solar value chain to showcase their brand and attract new recruits.
For jobs seekers, the #SolarWorksFair offers the opportunity to connect with talent recruiters and educators to better understand the wide variety of jobs in the solar sector.
Moreover, job seekers can get insight into skills that are needed and advice on education and training options to enter the rapidly growing solar market.
Registrations are now open and free for solar companies, job seekers, education and training providers.
SolarPower Europe will also be working throughout 2023, ‘The European Year of Skills,’ to support the sector in reaching the necessary solar workforce. SolarPower Europe has never considered it more important to join forces at the European level to upskill and reskill people in Europe.
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